fighting spam and scams on the Internet
"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam
The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.
Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- This email uses a separate reply address that is different from the sender address. Spammers use this to get replies even when the original spam sending accounts have been shut down. Also, sometimes the sender addresses are legitimate looking but fake and only the reply address is actually an email account controlled by the scammers.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "economic and financial crime commission" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "economic and financial crimes commission" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Economic and Financial Crimes Commission" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 2010 05:54:28 -0000
Subject: From Nigeria Investigation Bureau (Urgent)
From:Office of the Chairman
Economic and Financial Crime Commission
(Nigeria Investigation Bureau)
I am compelled to write you in respect of your fund remittance, which transfer has remained unsuccessful. Your fund is presently today being investigated on your payment file and reason why your own fund of $7.5 million has been delayed.
Please are you still alive? Did you sign any deed of assignment in your favour of one Mr. John Wheeler to receive your fund?
You are advice to confirm to us immediately whether or not you assign Mr. Wheeler and reconfirm the information as stated below to enable you receive your over due approved payment fund. Upon your reply, i shall give you full details of your payment details available with me. As this investigation bureau has endorsed that the actual time for the final accomplishment of your fund is now.
Country of Residence:
Awaits your prompt response.
Mrs. Farida M. waziri
Economic and financial crimes commission